The Elephant in the Offertory Plate

Bible Reading: 2 Corinthians 9: 10 - 15
Author: Anne Miller (Ontario, Canada)
Tuesday 14 August 2018 © The Upper Room.
The organist played and everyone finished singing the hymn. The stewards processed slowly to the front of the church, carrying the offertory plates. Everything was just as it should be except one thing. A small stuffed elephant sat on top of one of the offertory plates. The sight of the stuffed elephant combined with the serious faces of the stewards and the minister almost made me laugh out loud.

The minister prayed, offering the gifts to God, and the service        continued. I sat thinking about that elephant and have thought about it since. What if it were the only thing that the giver had to give? It could have been something valuable to that person, a personal sacrifice.

Our gifts are not just our money but also our possessions and time, our talents and abilities, our love and care, our energy and passions. We are each unique in what we can offer to God. Who am I to laugh at an elephant in an offertory plate? Something I offer might surprise someone else. But it doesn’t matter because the gifts are for God, who cares less about exactly what gifts we give than about our attitude as we give them.

Prayer: Dear God, help us to be cheerful givers every day, pleasing you with our generosity and joy. Amen
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